Product Review: Energy Drinks On A Budget – Power Play, Energy In Control And Azam


In this modern era of capitalism, characterised by overly marketed ‘modern (but very needless and sometimes very unnecessary) essentials’, we all have that one thing that we’ve needlessly bought into and consequently gotten sold on. We all have that one guilty pleasure, that needless but highly gratifying addiction that accounts for a few zeros out of our paycheck at the end of every month.

For some, it could be a chocolate addiction, or a particular obsession with a brand of yoghurt or even maintaining an expensive clothes collection, or whatever. That’s not the point. The point is, we all have that one thing. And that one thing for me is energy drinks. However, as you may already know, energy drinks are quite pricey, particularly the well-known established brands, such as Monster and RedBull and the likes, therefore, making it a quite pricey habit to maintain, especially if you consume a lot like me. That said, I went in search of affordable yet quality energy drink brands that are available in the market, and fortunately, I found quite a few.

Power Play.

A product of the Coca-Cola Beverage company, Power Play is the first brand I tried out. The first thing that gets you about this brand, is its logo, which is a Griffin, a mythical creature that is a blend between a lion and an eagle. Apart from the very noticeable logo, the other striking thing about this brand is that it comes in a 400ml bottle, which is a bit more than the other brands in this article, which is a particular selling point. When it comes to the drink itself, however, I found it to be a little bit too strong, and this may potentially put off people who prefer their beverages a little bit milder. It also has a bit of an aftertaste and it may probably leave your mouth tasting like coffee for a while. However, the energy boost that you get from the drink is quite powerful and lasts quite a bit, so that is a definite pro.

Overall verdict, a pretty good energy drink which is potent, though its potency may put off people who prefer milder drinks. Also, the energy boost you get from is almost immediate and lasts quite a while as stated earlier, though you may have to contend with the coffee aftertaste.

Energy In Control.

Arguably the most aesthetically pleasing of the bunch, Energy In Control was the next brand I tried out. Packaged in a small diminutive bottle, everything about this brand oozed attractiveness. From the branding and logo on the transparent bottle to the gold-coloured drink inside, everything about its packaging just makes you want to buy it. It has a unique stand-out ‘cool factor’, something the parent company of this brand got right, as most times, packaging and outside appearance is just as important or perhaps even more important than the product itself. As the marketing saying goes, appearance is everything, and this brand clearly understands that. Apart from the aesthetically pleasing exterior packaging, the drink itself is quite good too. Almost, excellent in my opinion. It has a smooth crispy apple taste, unlike the somewhat hoarse taste of the previous brand. It is also a bit sweet, a factor that will definitely appeal to sweet-toothed drink enthusiasts.

The only downside to this brand is perhaps its diminutive structure, no matter how visually appealing it is, which means it holds significantly less than the rest of the brands. The energy boost from it is also quite good, though not as strong as Power Play. Nonetheless, it is easily my favourite among the bunch.


Azam energy drink was the last brand that I tried out. This brand, originally from Tanzania, is not new to the Kenyan market, as it has been around for quite a while. Packaged in a distinctive blue bottle, this brand is perhaps the first one that you’ll notice in an aisle or counter, due to its unique colour. That said, however, its visual appearance is perhaps the only downside to this drink, well, besides its strong, potent and bittersweet taste. It also has a bit of a caffeine aftertaste, just like Power Play. However, that may perhaps be intentional, as it may appeal to people who like their drinks much stronger and far less sweet.

Overall, Azam may appeal to people who like stronger zingy drinks and whose taste buds have an inkling towards bitter-sweet kind of tastes. As stated earlier, the energy boost from Azam is quite powerful, and lasts quite a while, although it is not quite as powerful as that of Power Play but it is significantly higher than Energy In Control.  It seems to be very popular with people, as I have seen Azam all over the place, even with those vendors by the roadside so there must be something about it that people like.

All the energy drinks reviewed above retail at Ksh.50 and less, in all major supermarkets and outlets, therefore making them easily available and very pocket-friendly.

However, as with all energy drinks, it is important to moderate your intake, as consuming too much may carry potential harmful risks to you and your health.

These reviews are based on my own personal taste but you might have a different opinion. Which one have you tried and what did you like about it?

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